Dakota Mk III FZ656
On the 21st September 1944, 437 RCAF Squadron Dakota Mk III FZ656 left RAF Blakehill Farm on a resupply mission to Arnhem. The aircraft never made it home, crash landing in Belgium due to damage sustained by heavy flak, without loss of life.
All crew were taken prisoner.
F/O Kenny, Robert Allen CAN.J20134 Pilot RCAF
Sgt.Evans, L. 1607213 Co-pilot RAF
W/O Ronald Edgar English 409908 Navigator RAF
P/O MacAlony, Alfred H CAN. J87683 Radio Operator RCAF
799 Air Despatch Company, RASC
Corp. Pressland RCAF
Driver William Evans RCAF
Driver Jenssen RCAF
Driver Jordan RCAF – wounded in the back with shrapnel
REMAINS OF AIRCRAFT FOUND
Belgium page contributor, Wim Govers, WW2 historian from Mol, has very kindly shared with me some of his work in researching the crash.
Wim takes up the story – “A time ago I heard a story about 'an aircraft crash' in Dessel, Belgium. Dessel is very close to Turnhout (the place where the a/c crashed according to the reports). I spoke to some eyewitnesses and compared stories and reports that I found. When putting the puzzle together, I am 100% sure this is the place where Dakota FZ656 made his crash landing on September 21th, 1944. I also found some small parts from what is left from the aircraft on the crash site, the aircraft being left at the crash site until 1945/46 and being stripped by the locals.”
Wim has kindly allowed me to share some of his images including one of the downed C47 with the local townspeople (pictured.)
Wim has asked me to pas on his wishes learn more of the crew and the mission so that he, like me, can fully and accurately document another remarkable piece of the RAF Blakehill story and also perhaps get in contact with any relatives of those involved.